Monitoring the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

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Monitoring the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

Monitoring is the systematic and periodic observation of whether and how human rights are implemented. It is an essential part of the obligation to implement human rights treaties and thus also an essential part of the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

FAQ: What means monitoring and why is it important?

Monitoring and State Obligations

The States parties of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) have the obligation to monitor the implementation of children’s rights – such is the interpretation of the relevant provisions of the CRC according to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (Article 4 on the implementation of children’s rights and Article 44 on the States parties’ obligation to report to the Committee).

Monitoring and Development Cooperation

Development cooperation can and should help support monitoring processes in the global implementation of children’s rights. This is stated in Article 4 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Development cooperation can support monitoring through its work with the different stakeholders of the monitoring process.
Important stakeholders in the monitoring process are:

  • States parties in terms of ministries and other administrative authorities,
  • independent monitoring institutions, including National Human Rights Institutions (NHRI), ombudspersons, or commissioners for children’s rights,
  • civil society, for example NGOs ,
  • child- or youth-led organisations.

Development cooperation can support governments at the national, regional and local level to assess and control the impacts of laws and policies on children. It can support independent monitoring institutions and civil society organisations which contribute to the monitoring of the CRC. Furthermore, development cooperation should advise all state and non-state institutions and organisations on how to involve children and young people in the monitoring process.

Related literature

German Institute for Human Rights (2014): ABC of Children’s Rights: M for Monitoring and S for State Obligation. Fundamentals and significance of the Convention and what German bilateral government development cooperation can do to support its implementation

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